5 Top-Performing Examples For Your Black Friday Strategy

Posted by WhatRunsWhere on September 25, 2014
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Black Friday is a mix of fear and excitement for consumers – with memories of being trampled in stores, or having items stolen out of their bare hands. The same can be said for online marketers. It’s competitive but also an exciting time with huge earning potential if you plan in advance and get ahead of your competition.

Cyber Black Friday is on the upswing. While in-store sales were down 3% for the event last year, online purchases saw a 16% increase!

Black Friday is 2 months away but it’s time to start planning NOW! To help you get in the holiday mindset, check out what these 5 top-performers did in 2013…

We spotted these common patterns:

  • Deals (obviously)
  • Little imagery, text heavy
  • Combination of brand colors with either holiday or black colors
  • “View Ad” vs. “Shop Now” CTA


Macy’s goes big for their Black Friday campaign! They had the largest amount of Black Friday ads across all of the brands we investigated. They test elements like catchy slogans (“Black Friday Doorbusters” vs. “Black Friday Grab-A-Deal”) and focus on two different events – their in-store sale and their online sale. As well, their CTA is consistently “preview now”, which helps build excitement through anticipation of what the sales could be.

Learning from Macy’s we can see that it’s valuable to advertise to different types of Black Friday shoppers, and bank on building up mystery.



Toys R Us

For their Black Friday ad, Toys R Us keeps it basic but effective. They give a time and Click Here CTA to view the deals.  They make a point of standing out by prominently displaying their logo at the top and using playful bold colors. Sometimes less is more (just like with the deals themselves)!


Tiger Direct

People are eager to take advantage of deals and the wait for Black Friday can be tough. Tiger Direct capitalizes on this by offering their deals earlier than most other electronic retailers. They encourage early shopping, as their prices won’t be any better on the actual holiday. The ad highlights the importance of early deals more than it being for Black Friday.

Tiger Direct makes it obvious that you don’t always have to wait until the holiday itself to capitalize on the excitement.



Mod Cloth

Most advertisers drop most of their own branding in favour of dark colours for Black Friday. Mod Cloth, however, keeps it original by maintaining their girly and unique look – with only the copy making it evident what the ad is for.

They also rotate two different types of ads – one counting down to Black Friday, and another for “Beyond” Black Friday. Mod Cloth ensures no shopper misses out on the deals.



For their campaign Wal-Mart essentially just needs to announce that the holiday is approaching, and the consumers will come barging through the doors! Since people are already familiar with their “Roll Back” deals, Black Friday is just another great day to shop at Wal-Mart and save even more.

As Wal-Mart shows us, don’t pack your ads with all possible information on your deals. Announce only the most important components, and people will be excited to find out the rest.



It’s never too early to start planning for big marketing events like Black Friday. If you properly strategize, you’ll be able to stand out from the competition (which is at full force that time of year!).

There are some important decisions to be made, like when your deal is starting, and whether it’s in-store, online, or both. Sure there’s a lot of competition, but if you land on top, there’s also a lot of consumers eager to shop for bargains.


Topics: Display Ads, Digital Advertising, Online Advertising, retai


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